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Toxic Exposure in the Workplace


Injuries received from dangerous chemicals can have some of the longest-lasting effects on your quality of life. In some cases, workers who have been exposed to dangerous substances have even caused their family members to become ill, as well, by carrying these substances home with them via their clothing or shoes. Learn more about exposure to toxic chemicals in the workplace below, and contact an experienced New York workers’ compensation attorney for additional help. 

OSHA guidelines on working with potentially-dangerous chemicals

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has created detailed guidelines for how workers should be trained to handle toxic chemicals, and the safety measures that employers should put in place when requiring their employees to engage in this work. Employers must take steps to either substitute or eliminate dangerous substances for less harmful alternatives whenever possible. Spaces where dangerous chemicals are being used should be enclosed or, at a minimum, well-ventilated. Workers who handle dangerous substances should be rotated off of these tasks frequently.

All workers can suffer from toxic exposure

You may think that toxic exposure at work is something that happens only to those who work with chemicals as part of their job. This isn’t always the case. Cases of toxic exposure have been reported where cleaning crews failed to adequately ventilate buildings while using toxic products, or where offices contained unsafe building materials. Where workers tasked with handling dangerous substances use improper safety precautions, the release of toxic fumes or dust can harm not only those who are working directly with these toxic substances; they can also harm all those nearby who are within reach of these dangerous fumes or dust.

Claims for toxic exposure can be challenging to prove

Toxic exposure claims can be harder to prove than other types of on-the-job injuries. Toxic exposure injuries can display symptoms that are similar to those of other illnesses, ones which could have been developed outside of work. If the dangerous effects of certain substances have not yet been thoroughly studied, it can be challenging to convince an employer that your disabling illness was caused by exposure suffered on the job. Additionally, since toxic exposure can happen anywhere, your employer may try to claim that your exposure occurred at home or elsewhere, rather than at work. A seasoned workers’ compensation lawyer can gather the proof you’ll need to show that your exposure occurred on the job, entitling you to the benefits you need to stay afloat while you recover. 

If you’ve been injured at work in New York, seek help recovering the benefits you deserve for your injuries by contacting the seasoned and dedicated Highland workers’ compensation lawyer Peter M. Cordovano for a consultation, at (845) 414-8482

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